Kids are expensive. They are amazing, and expensive. Expensive enough that all the [somewhat flawed] posts about how, if you start saving 15% of your income when you're 25 you'll have somewhere in the neighborhood of several millions of dollars when you retire--well, all that can kind of fly out the window if you're 30- or 40-something and finding it hard to save because of summer camps, and clothes, and food for a middle-school boy, and sports teams, and college tuition. So then you read all those other posts about how there's such a large retirement savings gap in the US, and then feel deflated and resigned to the fact that you'll be sitting at work for at least fifty more years.

"But language is a treacherous thing, a most unsure vehicle."
Mark TwainMark Twain said that, and I can't disagree with him. Mastering the technical, dictionary definitions of words is good, but will only get you part way to communicating fully. That's because words don't always stick to their technical, dictionary definitions. They reshape themselves, sometimes drastically, based on the countless different contexts in which they find themselves written or read, spoken or heard.

I took a good look at my to do list yesterday. You know the list we add things to and instantly feel we've accomplished a big part of the task merely by writing it down? My list contains things like cleaning the gutters, fixing a crack in...